Compass Archives - Green Market Report

Dave HodesJanuary 13, 2022
mushroom.jpg?fit=960%2C640&ssl=1

10min13510

On December 20, 2021, breakthrough research at the Usona Institute, a 501(c)(3) non-profit medical research organization based in Madison, Wisconsin, revealed the true crystal forms of pharmaceutical psilocybin. It’s a new discovery of characteristics of the polymorphs of the plant that have always existed but were not detected until now.

But that discovery has ignited controversy within the psychedelics industry about synthetic psilocybin patents being sought by Compass Pathways (NASDAQ: CMPS), one of the leading psychedelics product development companies, using what they said is their original discovery of essentially the same polymorph that the Usona research reported already existed.

The new Usona Institute study laid out the experimental challenges to solve the crystallographic puzzle of synthetic psilocybin, bringing clarity to the polymorphs (unique crystalline arrangements) that naturally occur from the production of synthetic psilocybin. 

Usona claims that the study conclusively shows that three psilocybin polymorphs repeatedly occur from the well-known crystallization process, and that they have appeared in numerous places throughout the history of synthesizing psilocybin since 1959. 

In short, the study finds that there is nothing new to see here.

But Compass Pathways sees it differently. The company said they invented the crystalline form of psilocybin used in their synthesized psilocybin formulations, polymorph A, and want to patent it. Not so fast, the experts says.

The rise of the patent conundrum

The team of Usona chemists and collaborating crystallographers say that they already solved key psilocybin crystal structures using powder X-ray diffraction (PXRD) data collected on psilocybin at the Advanced Photon Source synchrotron at Argonne National Laboratory. 

In the Usona process-scale crystallographic research investigation, three crystalline forms of psilocybin were repeatedly observed: hydrate A, polymorph A, and polymorph B. The crystal structure for hydrate A had already been solved using X-ray diffraction. 

Usona’s study presents key new crystal structure solutions for the two anhydrates, polymorphs A and B, previously unidentified but part of the crystal structure dating back to when the crystalline structure was first reported in the 1970’s. 

Dr. Alexander Sherwood, lead author of the study and medicinal chemist at Usona, said they were just following clues available to any researcher to put together a full, clear picture of the three psilocybin polymorphs. “The process for isolating and crystallizing pure psilocybin has been consistently reproduced since first reported in 1959, and many different clues throughout history pointed to three psilocybin polymorphs resulting from that process,” he said. “The crystal structure solutions unified all the old evidence and data with precision and elegance. Once we put it all into one place, the full picture came together to tell a complete and compelling story about psilocybin crystallization.”

Then.. the twist

That data, that new discovery information from a non-profit company just wanting to advance the science of psilocybin, is creating conflicts between purists who say psilocybin should not be subject to patents and companies looking to build capitalist enterprises based on patenting such new product discoveries.

That’s where Compass Pathways comes in. Compass Pathways has developed a synthesized formulation of psilocybin, COMP 360, which uses crystalline psilocybin, and, in November, 2021, was granted its fifth U.S. patent by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO)—U.S. Patent No. 11,180,517—which covers methods of treating treatment-resistant depression (TRD) with crystalline psilocybin. 

A petition filed December 15 will challenge the patent granted on March 16, 2021. Additional petitions challenging Compass’ patents from the Freedom to Operate (FTO), a non-profit seeking to advance science and education by fighting bad and mistakenly issued patents, are expected.

The December 15 FTO petition quoted expert declarations filed with it from Dr. Sven Lidin (dean at the Lund University in Sweden) and Dr. James Kaduk (professor of chemistry at Illinois Tech and contributor to the Usona study) who explained that “’Polymorph A’ is a mixture of known psilocybin polymorphs, not a new polymorph as claimed. Compass’s patent is therefore invalid as claiming a nonexistent polymorph..”

So can Compass still claim to have identified a new crystalline structure—a so-called novel variant as mentioned in their patent application—for their synthetic psilocybin? Or does this finding by Usona and statements in the filing challenging Compass now negate the Compass Pathway’s synthetic psilocybin patents?

 Usona reseachers also addressed this in their study: “Revision is recommended on characterizations in recently granted patents that include descriptions of crystalline psilocybin inappropriately reported as a single-phase ‘isostructural variant.’”

In other words, the Compass patents using crystalline psilocybin are at best controversial—and at worst, null and void. 

But the Usona Institute v. Compass Pathways disagreement serves to illustrate a deeper and growing issue between non-profit psychedelics companies like Usona who just want to create and advance better therapies to treat human conditions, and for-profit companies like Compass who want to build an enterprise trying to control access and use of a natural product. 

The questions for the psychedelics community are: Who can commercialize, and control, psilocybin? Or.. should that ever happen?

“No one objects to Compass manufacturing and distributing psilocybin for medical uses, and certainly not me,” Carey Turnbull, founder and director of FTO, in a letter from the founder. “On the other hand, Compass has used their resources to try to prevent anyone but themselves from manufacturing and distributing psilocybin. That’s the rub.”

He continues: “(Compass) is attempting to patent things they should know they did not invent. Patents are not a systemic fault of the system; bad patents that attempt to appropriate pre-existing knowledge from the public commons and then ransom it back to the human race are a misuse of that system.”


William SumnerMarch 20, 2018
shutterstock_311358326.jpg?fit=1200%2C797&ssl=1

4min37632

No one likes a fake, especially in the business world. Sometimes in order to drive sales or investor interest, companies will misrepresent who they are and what industry they’re in. A most recent example is when the company Long Island Iced Tea Corp. changed its name to “Long Blockchain Corp.” and saw its stock prices soar.

Closer to home there are countless companies hoping to capitalize on the crazy amount of buzz that the cannabis industry has generated; even if they’re not really in the cannabis industry. Today Green Market Report will separate fact from fiction and give you a look at some of the most notorious Cannabis Fakes.

Corbus Pharmaceuticals

Corbus Pharmaceuticals is (CRBP) late-stage stage clinical pharmaceutical company that specializes in the development and commercialization of novel therapeutics to treat rare, chronic, and serious inflammatory and fibrotic diseases. Lately, the company has enjoyed a bit of buzz as a “cannabis company” listed on the NASDAQ exchange, but the truth is less exciting. The drug that has led to this company being called a “cannabis company” is JBT-101, which is an oral endocannabinoid-mimetic drug. What that means is that JBT-101 interacts with endocannabinoid receptors by mimicking cannabinoids, no cannabis required. The company may enjoy a Outperform rating from Raymond James, but it is by no means a cannabis company.

Compass Diversified Holdings

Compass Diversified Holdings (CODI) is a company that acquires and manages mid-size businesses. Compass gets its cannabis credentials from its ownership of the hemp-based food company Manitoba Harvest as well as the appropriately named Hemp Oil Canada. Aside from the fact that these two companies are just a small piece of Compass’ greater portfolio, most hemp advocates would be keen to point out that hemp is not cannabis; despite the similarities that these two may share.

22nd Century Group

Perhaps the most egregious use of the term “cannabis company” has to come from 22nd Century Group (XXII). 22nd Century Group is first and foremost a tobacco company. They got the reputation as a cannabis company because of their work with the development of hemp-based cannabinoid related products and through its collaboration with the University of Virginia to cultivate industrial hemp. The company’s lead product, however, is a brand of “non-addictive” cigarettes that contact low doses of nicotine, which is in keeping with the US Food and Drug Administration’s overarching goal of reducing the amount of nicotine in cigarettes. An interesting business venture, perhaps, but 22nd Century Group is definitely not what you would consider a cannabis company.


Choose Your News

Subscribe to the Green Market Report newsletter that gives you original content delivered straight to your inbox.

 Subscribe

We respect your privacy. See our privacy policy.


About Us

The Green Market Report focuses on the financial news of the rapidly growing cannabis industry. Our target approach filters out the daily noise and does a deep dive into the financial, business and economic side of the cannabis industry. Our team is cultivating the industry’s critical news into one source and providing open source insights and data analysis


READ MORE



Recent Tweets

@GreenMarketRpt – 2 days

5 Cannabis Stock Picks From Viridian

@GreenMarketRpt – 2 days

RT : AMAZING account of how consumer brands are using the psychedelic buzzword to market legal non-psychedelic products explo…

@GreenMarketRpt – 2 days

RT : Founder and managing principal of , Matt Hawkins, spoke with on primarily private-side investors in…

Back to Top

Choose Your News

Subscribe to the Green Market Report newsletter that gives you original content delivered straight to your inbox.

 Subscribe

We respect your privacy. See our privacy policy.